WTO-CITES Publication Reaffirms Trade-Environment Links
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The World Trade Organization (WTO) and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) have released a publication showing how global trade and environmental regimes can support each other and cooperate to achieve shared goals.

WTO Director-General Roberto Azevêdo and CITES Secretary-General John Scanlon formally launched the publication at WTO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland on 22 June 2015.

wto-cites22 June 2015: The World Trade Organization (WTO) and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) have released a publication showing how global trade and environmental regimes can support each other and cooperate to achieve shared goals. WTO Director-General Roberto Azevêdo and CITES Secretary-General John Scanlon formally launched the publication at WTO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland on 22 June 2015.

Azevêdo said that the collaboration reaffirms that the wellbeing of habitats, societies and economies are inextricably linked, and that both CITES and the WTO “embody the belief that multilateralism and the rule of law are indispensable in tackling challenges that reach beyond national borders.” He acknowledged many untapped win-win possibilities between trade, the environment and development.

Scanlon noted that over the past twenty years, not a single WTO dispute has directly challenged a CITES trade-related measure. He said that he looked forward to closer collaboration through enhanced information and policy dialogue, technical assistance and capacity building in order to tackle “increasingly interconnected global challenges in a coherent and effective manner.”

The publication, titled ‘CITES and the WTO: Enhancing Cooperation for Sustainable Development,’ addresses various forms of cooperation that assist governments in ensuring that trade, environment and development policies work together for sustainable development. It highlights, for example, how the WTO’s Trade Facilitation Agreement provides new opportunities for collaboration. The publication contends that appropriate trade facilitation efforts can foster cooperation between customs, wildlife and trade officials at the national and international levels, and support efforts by CITES to better regulate legal, sustainable and traceable wildlife trade, particularly in developing countries. [CITES Press Release] [Publication: CITES and the WTO: Enhancing Cooperation for Sustainable Development]

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